U.S.S. Enterprise CVN 65

The model of the only currently serving American aircraft carrier in it's own class, and the first nuclear powered carrier, the Enterprise as seen here was relatively quickly built from the crude Monogram (actually lately sold under the "Revell" name, as Revell bought out Monogram) kit, pretty much straight from the box. The kit is grossly under-detailed for it's size of 33-1/2 inches in length, but some creative paint work helps to rescue the model a bit and keep it from looking too dull. These older Monogram ship kits are notorious for having very little detail on them. Best displayed somewhere where they won't be carefully scrutinized! The display stand base was made from a slab of leftover baseboard trim I had laying around!



The kit does lend itself well for the hobbyist who wants to play with his models, as it should be fairly easy to make as a Radio Controlled ship. The relative lack of detail and somewhat robust or "thick" quality of the finished product allows for some handling without being too worried about destroying those really tiny wiggets when transporting it to and from the local pond or backyard swimming pool, and this model looks pretty good from a distance.

However, instead of going for full blown RC,  I opted instead to quickly equip this model for simple free running using a couple of toy motors (self-contained torpedo type) that can be attached to receptacles on the bottom of the hull. The model was also ballasted with lead weights strategically placed in the keel to insure that it would not tip over and also run properly on the waterline. The rudders are also made positionable so it can run in a circle if desired. I'll try to take a picture of it in the water when summer comes around!


The kit is, however, an example of one to AVOID buying unless you can get it for a low price, and/or if you do not need a highly detailed model. I got mine via a friend for only $25 from a "Toys 'R' Us" sale a few years ago, which is a more reasonable price for such a model. Incredibly, I've seen this same kit being sold in hobby shops for well over $200! Not exactly what I'd call a good deal! If you want something really nice and impressive (albeit a lot more complex) for a model Aircraft Carrier, you can get the Tamiya version of the Enterprise, or, better yet, you can get the incredible Trumpeter kit of the Nimitz (a fabulous kit! I highly recommend it!), both of which can be had for roughly around $150 each (unassembled of course) at the time of this writing. Both are also 1/350th scale, and just shy of a metre long, which is a pretty good size for a plastic kit! Check Ebay and shop around if you're interested.



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